Legislative Update: January 2022

Congress May Be Divided.  Their Constituents Are Not.

Shannon Benton, Executive Director

Over years of conducting surveys, TSCL has discovered something totally unexpected.  Although partisan politics often divides Congress and has done so for years, there’s a surprising level of agreement and consensus among older Americans, no matter what the political leaning, on a number of the most important issues.

Here are 8 issues for which our 2021 surveys found the highest level of consensus:

  1. Annual cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) that don’t adequately keep pace with rising costs — 98%.
  2. Rising cost of healthcare and prescription drugs — 89%.
  3. Living longer and spending more time in retirement creating the need for greater retirement resources, over a longer period of time — 88%.
  4. Lack of affordable senior living options and the rising cost of long-term care — 87%.
  5. Inadequate Social Security benefits at retirement — 86%.
  6. Lack of retirement savings— 83%
  7. Fewer people have pensions through employers — 82%.
  8. Rising debt in retirement — 74%.

With this issue of the Advisor, we are launching our 2022 Senior Survey.  For those of you who have taken our surveys before, please take this year’s survey.  This is one of our most important activities of the year, and a way for you to influence lawmakers in Congress and to educate the public about issues affecting you.

Some of the questions are familiar ones.  We ask how cost-of-living adjustments increased your benefits, and how rising costs are impacting your budgets.  We ask about taxation of Social Security benefits, or financial actions you have taken over the past year.  We ask questions about proposals under debate in Congress that would change benefits.  And we compare your answers against findings from previous surveys which allows us, among other things, to spot trends and changes in opinion.

The past 12 months bought a number of deeply difficult challenges and difficult decisions that have escalated anxiety and tensions throughout our nation.  But we are very grateful for your willingness to share your stories, take our surveys, support our petition initiatives and most of all, for your financial support which helps TSCL represent all Social Security recipients in Congress.   Thank you!